Beats me how the weekend can possibly go by so fast! But I did manage some embroidery this weekend, and I learned a little bit in the process. So … here goes….
Here’s the extent of my hand embroidery endeavors this weekend. I know it’s not that impressive! But still….
I managed the embroidered elements of two cards, plus the beginnings of a third, and I put in the rest of the berries and one pine cone on that blasted towel!
This card pattern comes from Erica Fortgens’ book, Merry Christmas Embroidery on Paper – that’s an Amazon link, if you want to read more about it. The design stitched up pretty quickly. In fact, it stitched up really quickly – the whole thing took less than an hour, including piercing the paper. I have some other ideas for this design. I think it would make a great snowflake, on blue, worked in white or pale silver, with tiny crystals attached. So I may try that later on. I’m going to cut this in a more interesting way, add a few little red crystals to it, put it on a printed background and affix it to a card, with a little ribbon at the top. Whatever… eventually, I’ll show you what I mean!
This little heart-wreath-thingy took less than an hour as well, including piercing the paper. I used the wrong sized piercing tool for the thread. I should have used an extra-fine tip, but I used the medium one. Still, it’ll pass muster, I suppose, once incorporated on a card with other distracting stuff attached! I’ll add some little red crystals in the middle of the open red spaces.
This one’s in progress. It’s a wreath, so there’ll be some greenery between the red balls. And of course, some little crystals in there, too. I like sparkly things on Christmas stuff! I can’t help it!!! This card is a little more complicated. I estimate it’ll take a little longer to stitch – so, all told, maybe an hour and a half.
Something I learned about embroidering on paper, or at least, about this type of embroidery on paper. It helps TREEEE MENDOUSLY to have the correct materials. All the Erica Fortgens books recommend Anchor Alpaca (edit: it’s Anchor Alcazar – sorry!) for the most part, which is a machine embroidery thread. Since I didn’t have any, in the past I’ve just used regular rayon embroidery floss. It works ok, in very short strands, and it gives a very pretty coverage. But it does get frustrating to work with! First of all, you have to work with short pieces; otherwise, the embroidery floss frays, and that’s a pain in the neck. Another thing is the nature of rayon embroidery floss – it’s cranky!
Well, finally I figured that it doesn’t actually have to be Anchor machine embroidery thread! Machine embroidery thread in general works great on these paper projects because it is supple, it stands up to abuse, it’s fine, and, depending on the type you get, it’s very pretty and shiny stuff, perfect for Christmas cards. You can also get it in metallics, which are much easier to use on paper than regular metallic embroidery floss. MUCH EASIER. I couldn’t believe the difference.
Anyway, I found I could stitch a lot faster with the right materials, once I took out a few spools of machine embroidery thread.
Sheeesh. I was a bit slow on that discovery, wasn’t I??
I’ll talk about the towel later – I’ll show you that pine cone up close. I really don’t want to talk about the towel right now. Aaargh!!
Finally, it’s December, so I will have my monthly stash give-away coming up this week. It’s a rather special give-away. Not quite the same type of loot as before, but … loot, nonetheless! Some people will be excited about it, but I realize there will be some who say… “?!?” It won’t interest every stitcher, I’m afraid…. !!! Yes, yes, enough enigmatic talk. Wait for it!
Hope your Monday is terrific!